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date: 19 February 2020

Bielawa, Lisa locked

  • Ryan Dohoney


(b San Francisco, CA, Sept 30, 1968). American composer, vocalist, and improviser; daughter of composer Herbert Bielawa and organist/scholar Sandra Soderlund. As a child she composed, sang, and played violin. She was a member of the San Francisco Girls Chorus and wrote some of her earliest compositions for the group. Bielawa studied literature at Yale, graduating in 1990, and soon moved to New York City. In 1992 she began singing and touring with the Philip Glass Ensemble and later sang with John Zorn. In 1997 she co-founded the MATA Festival, a concert series that presents the music of younger composers.

Bielawa’s compositional output is extensive and includes orchestra works, music for voice and ensemble, and music for dance. Her musical language is rhapsodic, harmonically adventurous, and grounded in a propulsive energy. Her orchestrations are characterized by a warmly expressive range of timbres. Bielawa’s musical oeuvre has been shaped by her close relationships with particular performers and their unique abilities. Her ...

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